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J Psychopharmacol. 2012 Oct;26(10):1348-54. doi: 10.1177/0269881112443745. Epub 2012 Apr 19.

Cannabinoid exposure in adolescent female rats induces transgenerational effects on morphine conditioned place preference in male offspring.

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  • 1Department of Biomedical Sciences, Tufts University, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, North Grafton, MA 01536, USA.


In the United States, marijuana is one of the drugs most abused by adolescents, with females representing a growing number of users. In previous studies, treatment of adolescent female rats with morphine significantly altered brain reward systems in future offspring. As both cannabinoid and opioid systems develop during adolescence, it was hypothesized that early exposure to cannabinoids would induce similar transgenerational effects. In the current study, female rats were treated with the cannabinoid receptor (CB1/CB2) agonist WIN 55,212-2 or its vehicle for three consecutive days during adolescent development (30 days of age), and were subsequently mated in adulthood (60 days of age). The adolescent and adult male offspring of these WIN 55,212-2 (WIN-F1)- or vehicle (VEH-F1)-treated females were tested for their response to morphine using the conditioned place preference (CPP) paradigm. Both adolescent and adult WIN-F1offspring exhibited greater sensitivity to morphine CPP than their VEH-F1 counterparts. Collectively, the findings provide additional evidence of transgenerational effects of adolescent drug use.

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